Female candidates in Mangochi warned against electoral violence 

District Elections Officer for Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) in Mangochi, Rodrick Kazembe has urged women aspiring for parliamentary and local government positions to avoid violence during electoral campaign period.

Cross section of female candidates in Mangochi

He made the call on Wednesday during an interface meeting organized by the 50:50 Campaign Management Agency between the women aspirants and electoral stakeholders held in the district in preparation for a solidarity march against violence.

Kazembe said once the campaign period is officially opened, for every political rally that the aspirants would want to hold, they would be required to write the police and MEC notifying them about the planned rally.

“Let us conduct a clean campaign and let us use appropriate language that will not make others feel offended. We should also advise our supporters that campaign is not about singing songs that will irritate others who have different political leanings,” he pointed out.

Kazembe said MEC always puts women at its heart and that it was for that reason that the nomination fees for female candidates were slashed to give more room to as many aspirants as possible.

He appealed to the contestants to make sure that they recruit monitors before March 1, 2019 to allow ample time for MEC to train the same.

“You have to give us names of your monitors so that we should orient them on the processes,”  the MEC Officer adding that, “Make sure that you choose monitors who can read and write to avoid compromising the electoral process.”

Gender and Governance Manager for the 50:50 Campaign Management Agency, Gladys Nthengwe said it was the agency’s desire to end political violence against women once and for all in the country.

She described the female candidates’ enthusiasm as encouraging, adding that the Agency was working on refunding the nomination fees for all women who would contest in the May 21 polls as a way of motivating the aspirants.

According to MEC calendar, the official campaign will be officially opened on March 19, 2019 and it will run for 60 days up to May 19, two days before the polling day.


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